Monday, November 10, 2008

'And when this world runs out of lovers.....

...we'll still have eachother. Nuthin's gonna stop us nowwwwwww!'

Imagine me, belting out 80s style Jefferson Starship love ballads, with great, stuffy-headed passion and happiness, and you will get an idea of how thrilled I was to receive this:
dad-style care package!

This is a package from my most awesomest dad, via foodfight (which I love, and now my dad does too). Can you read the note? He asked them to write me a note and they actually did! It says 'Get well soon {heart} Dad'. (blogger won't let me put the actual heart in because of something having to do with html which is totally dumb.)

Next up is more stuff from Vcon. I think I've finally put my finger on what it is about this cookbook that makes me want to use it so much. It reminds me of my mom's cookbooks. The big, fat ones with loads and loads of recipes. It's hardcover. It has some weight to it. The recipes are hearty. And now that it's cold as hell here (I've decided that if hell exists, it wouldn't be hot, it would be cold, because being cold sucks so much worse than being hot), hearty recipes are what my belly craves. ('electrolytes - it's what plants crave!' ohhhh...idiocracy)

I had some leeks in the fridge that I bought before I got sick and refused to use until my tastebuds were working again. I got my buds back sometime on Friday, so Saturday I used up those leeks with lots of love in the Leek and Bean Cassoulet w/Biscuits.
biscuit cloud heaven

It was good. It was not as good as the first time I made it though! I don't know what happened. I somehow royally screwed up the biscuits... They were a tad gummy (and you know I hate stuff that sticks to my teeth)... I kept having to add more and more and more flour to the batter, which is weird because last time I made them, I did not have to do that. Hm. Oh well, they still tasted good.
bowl of biscuity beany leeky goodness

There's just something about biscuits, isn't there? I'm not talking about cookies, either, Brits! Although, cookies are good too. But...maybe not in a way that biscuits are?

Ode to biscuits: biscuits are wonderful. biscuits can be sweet. biscuits can be savory. biscuits are a fluffy favorite of mine. biscuits are best served warm, straight out of the oven. with jam. or stew. i do not like 'butter' on my biscuits! biscuits are good plain. biscuits are easy to make. biscuits are the best personal bread item ever invented. my mom makes good biscuits. my grandma made good biscuits. michael makes good biscuits. i make good biscuits. the end.

On to the Seitan Picatta. I have been putting off making this recipe. I wish I hadn't. Although, after reading LindyLoo's post about it, I believe I have a greater appreciation for this dish.
picatta rules.

I first had seitan picatta* at Blossom in NYC (which by the way makes the best food on the planet, and if you are ever around Chelsea, please go there). It was creamy, lemony, capery, wonderful. This was a tad different, in that it was less creamy and lemony. But it was really good in it's own right. Michael seriously disliked it, by the way. But Michael hates capers. *sigh* I suppose if he can put up with me hating vinegar and mushrooms, I can accept this. Even if it means that I don't get to eat this dish often.

I did not fry my portion of the seitan. I started frying some, but it started freaking me out with it's oiliness, so Michael ate those and I ate my slices that were just from the steamed loaf. But yeah... I can't really say much else, besides that it is salty. In a really, really good way. Yeah. Go read LindyLoo's post. It's a tad graphic (not that I'm complaining), but...well, this dish calls for it, methinks.

Finally, I made something a bit out of my comfort zone. And it made me a little sad, because I did something I shouldn't have, thinking that it would be ok. Listen people: apparently I am developing a hatred for cloves now, too. Great. You know, I didn't used to be this picky. I don't know what the hell happened to me. Well...I do know why I don't like cloves anymore. It might have something to do with the accidental clove overdose that occurred back in September (scroll down, you'll find it).

This would explain why I felt a little apprehensive about the cloves added to Hannah's Cranberry Pudding. I felt especially sad because this is the first recipe I've tried from her wonderful wonderful blog and I SO wanted to like it. It was awesome before I added the cloves. Why oh why did I think I would be ok with this? The clove taste (only 1/2 tsp!) is very pervasive for me. And Michael. This is a huge disappointment (but not Hannah's fault... our tastebuds are just stupid). I'm trying to find someone who really loves cloves, cranberries, and oranges that I can give it to, because it really is too lovely to waste. Just look!
beautiful red pudding of love

I will make this again. I will not add cloves. Because the tartness of the cranberries and the sweetness of the orange add plenty of flavor for me. The texture of this pudding is perfect, as well. Creamy with nice little cranberry chunkies. So... go make this. Add cloves if you're not like me and apparently don't like them. And if you wanna come to my house with a cooler and take this nice little pudding away for your very own within the next couple days...haha... feel free! I used a bag of cranberries, 2 whole oranges, and 2 cups of sort of expensive sugar in this, so I'm loathe to waste that. I'm sorry, Hannah! I feel terrible. Again, this is my fault. Not the recipe!

Man. I am verbose today, yes? Time to go wash some dishes and make some din. I am under orders to make something that Michael will like, and was then asked if I was aware of what he did and did not like, in case he needed to clarify. hahaha... This is how sadfaced he was about that piccata and the pudding. Dinner tonight will be good, I promise!

*I just went to their website and realized what I had was seitan scallopini, not picatta, but the flavors are really, really close, but also that maybe my preconceptions about the Vcon recipe were a bit off. Oops!


miss v said...

i am an anti-clove as well. i don't know why... just one of those things. (like your thing with vinegar).

but that biscuit dish looks like i could have ordered it straight out of the joy of cooking menu (via 1970). and i mean it in a completely awe-inspiring way. nice work little lady!

and i'm off to check out food fight...

Georgia said...

My husband is anti clove - I think he had a bad apple crumble experience - I however love cloves - but agree that a dish can easily become too clovey!

I have never had the american biscuit and so recipes like the leek and bean one from Vcon make me a little nervous - not only have I never made these so called 'biscuits' (I am with the Brits on this one) but I don't even know what they should be like when I do make them... Maybe I should pop round to yours for tea some time??

It looks really good though.

Jenn said...

Mmmm buiscits. Wow everything looks awesome. Food fight care package is the sweetest thing ever! Candle Cafe 79th st NYC also makes awesome seitan picatta. I have yet to go to Blossom. They were closed due to a gas leak the last time I made reservations, and we've just never gone back.

allularpunk said...

miss v - i feel very 1970s housewife lately, so no offense taken there.

georgia - i forgot that you aussies call cookies biscuits as well, sorry! and you really must make some american style biscuits. you can come by for tea anytime. 'cept here i just call it my afternoon snack :)

jenn - blossom is totally worth the trip. do it!

aTxVegn said...

My goodness, are you ever going to get well? You write like you're much better and I know you're eating well, must be a nasty bug you got.

Maybe you could try allspice instead of cloves and get the same effect but with less kick.

My hell is cold too.

Hannah said...

Aw, I'm so sorry that you didn't like the pudding! To mellow the clove taste, perhaps you could make it into a sort of chai-spiced concoction, and add a bunch more spices to cover it up? I'm just sad that you were so disappointed, I wish I could fix it!

Anonymous said...

Your dad is adroable! I would love a care package like that! Sorry about the biscuit disappointment...and the clove disappointment...have some tings to make it better!

Liz said...

I like pretty much everything but I can't take cloves. Every time I try a recipe with them I think I'll be OK this time but I can always sniff out even a pinch of them. With you on that one!

Anonymous said...

Your Dad is SO great! My pops went out and bought me some Imported American Oreos from a shop near his work last time I visited (cos European Oreos aint vegan) Dads are brill! :o)
And cloves are the work of the devil!
As for the biscuits ~ I think American biscuits are like savory scones. Whatever they are, they look very 'Nom' indeed!

Anonymous said...

Psst, You've been tagged!

Sal said...

awww bless your dad, how sweet!!

I still haven't made the cassoulet or piccata yet but they look sooo good, I must give them a go!

Virginia said...

you are so lucky to have such a sweet father! i am envious!

sorry about the pudding, but the leek and bean cassoulet looks amazingly good enough to make up for it in my eyes!

jessy said...

idiocracy quote! yay! we quote that one a lot, too! it's freak'n great! ahahahaaa!

your dad = the bestest ever. he's putt'n mine to shame! ahahaaa! and i'm sorry that you saved your leeks and then the cassoulet didn't turn out as rock'n as last time - gummy biscuits = sadface. could have been 'cause it was cooler or rainy or something. does humidity effect stuff like that - i know it effects frosting. maybe it wasn't even rainy where you are - i dunno. just toss'n it out there. biscuits - oh, biscuits. i could easily eat one million biscuits - make myself sick on biscuits - they're so awesome! gosh, i love those little puffs of deliciousness. dan & i are totally going to have a night of nothing but biscuits & breadsticks. that sounds like heaven. mmmmmm!

sadface on hannah's recipe - cloves - i'm kinda love/hate with them. some things taste super awesome with cloves - and others, not so much. i can never figure it out. i dunno. and tastes change, definitely. when we became vegan i started liking things i never liked before (tempeh, eggplant, cucumbers), and hating crap i used to like (smoked paprika, chinese-five spice, etc.) - it was weird! nutty!

your seitan picatta is making me wish i could eat seitan. good god - i might just have to make it and be ill for a few hours - because your seitan picatta looks soooo damn scrumptious and i want to to show it all in my face and then sop up any leftovers with crusty bread. mmmmmmmmmm!

now i wish my lunch break were sooner! hooray for some tasty look'n foods, Jessica - and i hope your dinner last night was most delicious for both of ya! :)

Celine said...

cloves aren't my friends either.
BUT your dad is made of awesome, so that makes up for the clove letdown. and what is it I hear, you're still not feeling better? :(

Crystal said...

Your dad is adorable!!

Melisser; the Urban Housewife said...

I am all about the Vcon at home too! It's always the 1st cookbook I pick up. I want to make that Picatta!
How cool is your Dad?! That's so sweet.

Anonymous said...

I heart your dad! The food looks good too.

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